Friday, November 18, 2016

What I’m Watching: Better Things (Season Finale)

Better Things: Season 1, Episode 10 “Only Women Bleed” (B+)

This was a fitting sendoff for this show as it wraps its first season, showing Sam, as usual, dealing with a million different things assaulting her from different directions and just trying to make the best of it as she moves on. Her plan to take her mom away fell apart because she just couldn’t do it, and this time it was Max who didn’t give her a particularly hard time while both Duke and Frankie did. Duke’s bad dream seemed like the clear reason for her suddenly being sick, and her sisters weren’t too supportive of her scheme and Sam’s parenting decisions. Frankie never makes things easy, and her refusal to use the girl’s bathroom at school signaled a few possibilities. Her insistence that she didn’t think she was a boy was balked at by Max, but she did weave a compelling – and disturbing – narrative of what happened that made her not want to go in there anymore. Sam does a good job throwing her arms up in despair and venting verbally for a second before coming back to a place of support and ultimately acceptance. She almost got caught taking a picture of her bra just like she did a while ago when she was watching porn, and the safe space of her car provided the opportunity for some pretty uninvolved one-way phone sex. This show sometimes knocks it out of the park, and though this episode was less exciting, it was an effective stopping point to close thing down for now before the show returns next year for season two.

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